Are there any animals in the animal kingdom cuter than otters? (Okay, maybe sleepy sloths, but I think otters are well up in the 10 ten, right?)
Located along the path from the Tree of Life area on your way to Africa, the Otter Grotto features an entire family of Asian small-clawed otters, informational signs, and an underwater viewing area.
The Asian small-clawed otter is the smallest otter species in the world (at 28-39 inches long, of which a foot of that is the tail). They are native to parts of South and Southeast Asia, where they lives in mangrove swamps and freshwater wetlands. That tail provides them with exceptional propulsion to help them slice through the water. Watching them swim through the water in this exhibit is a real treat. You’ll most likely find them on land for a majority of the day, as these otters are the least aquatic of the otter family.
Some of the otters in the exhibit are named Luke (the alpha male), Nitnoy (the alpha female), and their triplets Raakshas (“monster”), Pintar (“smart or clever”), and Pitakee Pyaaree (“daddy’s girl”).
For the best experience seeing them play, visit in the early morning or late afternoon, when the cooler temperatures bring out their fun side.
Fun fact: The sponsor for this exhibit? Otterbox (the company that makes rugged cases for your mobile devices). Isn’t synergy grand?